aside ISRAEL- PALESTINE CONFLICT FROM JANUARY TO SEPTEMBER 2015

AT UN FORUM ON HUMAN RIGHTS, US AND ISRAEL WERE ABSENT
AT UN FORUM ON HUMAN RIGHTS, US AND ISRAEL WERE ABSENT
Following details are from the UN Security Council’s 2015 Chronology on the Israel _Palestine conflict:
January 2015

“On January 15, the Council held its regular quarterly open debate on the situation in the Middle East (S/PV.7360).Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jens Anders Toyberg-Frandzen briefed the Council, warning that “the increasingly antagonistic and virulent nature of the discourse between the two sides should be cause for serious concern among those seeking to foster an environment conducive to a return to constructive dialogue”. He stressed that the international community must uphold its responsibility to play a role in moving the parties forward towards the two-state solution. On Gaza he noted that the ceasefire agreement between the parties remains perilously fragile, and there are no indications that a return to talks under Egyptian auspices is on the immediate horizon.”

West Bank Map
West Bank Map
February 2015

“On February 18, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman briefed the Council in the regular monthly meeting on the Middle East (S/PV.7386). Feltman remarked that the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians continues to threaten further escalation, which could potentially have irreversible consequences for both parties and for the two-state solution. He also reported that the Palestinians are facing acute fiscal challenges that must be urgently addressed and that in February, the Israeli government announced that, for a second month, it would withhold the transfer of the tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority in retaliation for the Palestinian accession to the ICC. Feltman also reported that the Middle East Quartet met on February 8 to prioritize the urgent resumption of negotiations and a strengthening of its engagement to prepare for a revival of the peace process. Turning to Gaza, he stated that the Secretary-General continues to be very concerned about the fragile security situation, the volatile political dynamics and the persistently slow pace of reconstruction.”

Gaza-photo
Gaza-photo
March 2015

“In his final briefing as Special Coordinator, Robert Serry on March 26 briefed the Council in the regularly monthly Middle East meeting. He urged the Council to take the lead on the issue and to present a framework for negotiations as perhaps “the only way to preserve the goal of a two-state solution”, noting that during his tenure, the Council had passed only two resolutions on the matter, neither of which had offered a strategy. He recalled that all three stalled negotiations, had been followed by wars in Gaza, called for a new strategy that prioritized Gaza and warned that persistent illegal settlement activity could kill the prospects for peace. On recent events, he briefed on Israel’s March 17 elections, expressing concern at remarks by the Prime Minister, which raised serious doubts about Israel’s commitment to the two-state solution, and he urged the incoming Israeli Government to seize the opportunity of a fresh mandate to quickly demonstrate that commitment.”

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon
April 2015

“On April 21, Jordanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Judeh presided over the Council’s quarterly open debate on the Middle East. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon briefed. Ban urged the incoming Israeli government to reaffirm commitment to the two-state solution and take credible steps to foster an environment conducive to meaningful negotiations, including a freeze of settlement activity. He also welcomed an agreement reached to allow the transfer of more than $470 million in tax revenues to the Palestinian Authority and called for progress in Palestinian reconciliation and alleviation of the humanitarian situation in Gaza. Ban also expressed concern that clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians continued in the West Bank. In their interventions, speakers agreed on the urgency of resolving the conflict through a two-state solution and called for action on the part of the Council, including possibly through a resolution to move negotiated progress forward. Most speakers also called for an end to settlement activities in the West Bank and for alleviating the situation in Gaza. Many also stressed the need to ensure Israel’s security. On April 28, under “any other business”, Council members discussed the April 27 letter from the Secretary-General that transmitted a summary of the findings of the UN Board of Inquiry into a number of incidents that occurred in Gaza and southern Israel between July 8 and August 26, 2014, affecting or involving UN personnel, premises and operations.

West Bank photo
West Bank photo
May 2015

“On May 19, in his first monthly briefing to the Council as Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Nickolay Mladenov warned that given the vicious tide of terror and extremism in the region, it was even more critical for Israelis and Palestinians to negotiate a two-state solution and end actions that imperil an agreement. He called on the new Israeli government to take credible steps, including a freeze of settlement activity, and reiterated the necessity of continued security cooperation. He also reported on growing tensions in the West Bank, and the slow pace of reconstruction in Gaza.”

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah of the State of Palestine (left) and with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right). © UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meets with Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah of the State of Palestine (left) and with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right).
© UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
June 2015

“On June 24, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman briefed the Council in the regular monthly meeting on the Middle East. Feltman cautioned that “accepting a fatalistic narrative on the…conflict will only accelerate a deterioration of the situation.” He remarked that the Secretary-General was encouraged by the recent reaffirmations by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of his commitment to “the idea of a sustainable two-State solution”, but that such a pledge must be translated into action, including a halt to unilateral activities in the West Bank. Feltman reported the situation in the West Bank remained tense and that homes there continued to be demolished. In Gaza, progress on reconstruction remained too slow, with additional funding needed before September. He also expressed hope that the Commission of Inquiry’s report would contribute to bringing justice to victims of the 2014 conflict.”

Israel Gaza border
Israel Gaza border
July 2015

“On July 20, Security Council members Jordan and Malaysia convened an Arria-formula meeting on Gaza intended to draw attention to the fact that since the 51-day Israeli offensive “Operation Protective Edge” against Gaza one year ago, little or no recovery or reconstruction has taken place, and that the situation of civilians in Gaza is unsustainable. The speakers were Vance Culbert (in person) and Wafaa Karfana (via a pre-recorded video message) of the Norwegian Refugee Council, an organization that works on community protection in Gaza; Tania Hary from Gisha, an Israeli organization focused on protecting the freedom of movement of Palestinians, especially Gaza residents; Sara Roy from the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University; and Ardi Imseis (via pre-recorded video message) who spoke as an independent expert on accountability issues and was formerly a legal officer for UNRWA—the UN agency for Palestinian refugees. On July 23, New Zealand’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Murray McCully presided over the Council’s quarterly open debate on the Middle East. Special Coordinator Nickolay Mladenov reported that the current situation on the ground was not sustainable and the two-state solution remained under threat, including from settlement construction, security incidents, occupation-related violence and lack of Palestinian unity, he said. In the absence of a political process, the rise of violent extremist and terrorism in the region presented further danger. Mladenov also stressed the need to end unilateral activities in the West Bank, including settlement construction, so-called legalization of outposts, demolitions and evictions.”

Occupied West Bank area
Occupied West Bank area
August 2015

“On August 19, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman briefed the Council in the regular monthly meeting on the Middle East. Feltman said the risk of escalation in Israel and Palestine is palpable and that a comprehensive approach on the ground, in the region and with the international community is needed to restore confidence, before returning to realistic negotiations. On the Israeli side, that should reflect significant policy shifts to enable Palestine’s sovereignty, economy and security to grow while on the Palestinian side, unity is critical, he said. On recent events, he briefed that violence continued, including incidents that resulted in Palestinian casualties as well as attacks on Israelis and Israeli security forces. Israel’s practice of demolishing homes and structures also continued.”

Israeli rocket shelters
Israeli rocket shelters
September 2015

“Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov briefed the Council from Jerusalem via video teleconference during the regular monthly meeting on September 15. He remarked that frustration, fear and violence have continued to spiral, undermining belief in finding a way out of the impasse. The situation on the ground remains precarious despite efforts by Israel in recent months to ease some restrictions in the West Bank and Gaza, he said. Sporadic rocket and missile exchanges between Israel and Gaza continue, as do clashes between Palestinians and Israeli settlers in the West Bank. August saw the highest number of demolitions since June 2010, with 142 Palestinian-owned structures demolished and more than 200 Palestinians displaced. On September 17, Council members issued a press statement that expressed grave concern regarding escalating tensions in Jerusalem, including clashes in and around the Haram al-Sharif compound, and called for upholding the compound’s historic status quo.”

2 comments

Comments are closed.